Dalic praises evergreen Modric as Croatia reach Nations League final

football14 June 2023 23:07| © Reuters
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Luka Modric © Gallo Images

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic heaped praise on Luka Modric after the 37-year-old was once again the architect in midfield as they reached the Nations League final with a 4-2 extra time victory over the Netherlands on Wednesday.

Real Madrid's Modric won a penalty for Croatia's opening goal and converted a spot kick in extra time to wrap up victory for Dalic's side.

With Modric edging closer to the end of a stellar career, Dalic was hopeful he would be able to call on the playmaker for some time to come.

"He can be the one to help us win the gold medal," Dalic told reporters, before addressing Modric's future.

"Luka will decide for himself after the finals, but with him we are way better, we have far more quality."

Croatia finished third at the World Cup in Qatar in December, four years after a runners-up finish at the tournament in Russia.

They will face Spain or Italy in the Nations League final on Sunday and Dalic hopes they can finally win a major tournament to crown a golden era for the national team.

"It would be a great reward to win the gold medal, I think we have deserved it," Dalic said.

"We have been a team of constant quality for the past six years."